'I wasn't ready to give up': How five riders bounced back from serious setbacks

Cycling goes wrong sometimes, it’s a fact of life. Be it injury, illness or error, the important thing is how you respond and move on. Dr Josephine Perry speaks to riders who’ve bounced back from serious setback

Allen and Harvey's RAAM bid/Chris Froome (Twitter)

Setbacks suck. And setbacks are common. In a recent CW Twitter poll of 644 cyclists, nearly half said they’d had at least one setback necessitating a week or more off the bike in the past year; a quarter had had more than three such forced lay-offs.

As much as we like to take pride in our resilience, the proliferation of pinned collarbone x-rays on Instagram suggests that we don’t always bounce quite as well as we’d like. The passion we feel for our riding means that, when something goes wrong, we tend to be hit hard, both physically and mentally.

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Josephine Perry

Dr Josephine Perry is a Chartered Sport and Exercise Psychologist whose purpose is to help people discover the metrics which matter most to them so they are able to accomplish more than they had previously believed possible. She integrates expertise in sport psychology and communications to support athletes, stage performers and business leaders to develop the approaches, mental skills and strategies which will help them achieve their ambitions. Josephine has written five books including Performing Under Pressure, The 10 Pillars of Success and I Can: The Teenage Athlete’s Guide to Mental Fitness. For Cycling Weekly she tends to write about the psychological side of training and racing and how to manage mental health issues which may prevent brilliant performance. At last count she owned eight bikes and so is a passionate advocate of the idea that the ideal number of bikes to own is N+1.